It’s been a couple of months since I’ve shared a frugal real food meal plan with you guys, and that’s a couple of months too long. I’m so sorry!
I mentioned at the start of summer that the Crumbs team has been working on something fun for you guys, but in order to get it done in a timely fashion (i.e. before we grew gray hair) we had to trim back on the meal plans around here.
Fortunately, most of those fun ideas for you guys have been worked out and I think we’re getting back into our rhythm around here again with the frugal meal plans. Yay! Although summer is coming to an end (boo!), this is one of my favorite times of year. Late gardens are still producing various squash, melons are big and juicy and the first of fall apples are being picked. It’s the perfect overlap in my opinion, of fresh, juicy summer and cool, crisp fall.
If you haven’t enjoyed the taste of summer yet, get it while you still can. Although this overlap is fun, it is very short lived. All the “fun” foods will be gone soon and we’ll be stuck with hard, sturdy winter squash for what seems like an eternity!
September’s four week, frugal real food meal plan was strategically planned on the current selection at the farmer markets and my own CSA box, lol. Remember, this meal plan is arranged in order to best fit MY schedule. Take it and use it as-is, or chop it up with scissors, re-arrange it and glue it back into place so that it best fits your own family’s schedule and activities.
Since we get a CSA (community supported agriculture) box each week, some of the meals include substitution ideas in parenthesis. This flexibility allows you (and me) to use whatever is already in the house, or whatever is affordable at the market, without having to completely toss the meal plan aside because it’s not EXACTLY the same ingredient, and save money in the long run.
Healthy Eating Plan: September 2014
Notes on this Healthy Eating Plan:
- This meal plan is for the average family of four, costing approximately $330. You might need to change portion sizes according to your own family size and budget.
- Meals are based around 2 whole chickens, 2-3 lbs pork roast and 2 lbs bacon. You’re welcome.
- The meals within this plan were designed to build off of each other, using leftovers when possible and allowing opportunities for batch cooking (i.e. making one big batch of tortillas instead of making “just enough” on two separate days.) Take advantage of this to really lower your budget and reduce time spent in the kitchen.
Healthy Eating Plan: Week 1
(S) Caesar Salad with Biscuits
(M) Provencal Soup with Soaked Whole Wheat/Spelt Bread
(T) Roasted Whole Turned Chicken (oven or grill) with Panzanella Salad
(W) Stovetop Spaghetti
(T) Baked Eggplant Parmesan
(F) Chicken Tacos, Homemade Flour Tortillas, Coconut Rice, Salsa Verde
(S) Homemade Pizza
Healthy Eating Plan: Week 2
(S) Sausage/Chicken Creole
(M) Spinach & Chicken Enchiladas
(T) Thai Crunch Salad with Peanut Dressing
(W) Pasta Primavera
(T) End of Summer Minestrone Soup with Soaked Whole Wheat/Spelt Bread
(F) Bulger Veggie Burger Sliders
(S) Chicken Salad Sandwiches
Healthy Eating Plan: Week 3
(S) Mexican Corn & Potato Chowder with Dinner Biscuits
(M) Veggie Fried Rice
(T) BLT Chopped Salad
(W) Faux Risotto with 5 Summer Vegetables
(T) Garlic White Bean Soup with Kale with Soaked Whole Wheat/Spelt Bread
(F) Homemade Pizza
(S) Grilled BLT Sandwiches with Roasted Potato Wedges
Healthy Eating Plan: Week 4
(S) Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas with Homemade Corn Tortillas
(M) Orange Chicken over Rice
(T) Southwestern Salad and Dinner Biscuits
(W) Healthy Baked Ziti with Kale
(T) Spinach Lasagna Soup with Soaked Whole Wheat/Spelt Bread
(F) Carnitas Tamale Pie
(S) Grilled Chicken with Key West Marinade
Healthy Eating Plan: Breakfast
Breakfasts are usually a variety of meals, based largely on what we have in the kitchen and almost always served with fresh fruit. These are a few basic meal ideas, plus some recommended recipes that should align with the ingredients being purchased for the dinners above. Simple meals like breakfast porridge and baked oatmeal can be flavored based on what you have in your own kitchen.
- Eggs (scrambled, fried, baked)
- Breakfast Porridge (with mix-ins based on what you have available)
- Baked Oatmeal (variety depending on what you have available)
- Zucchini Bread with Carrots & Apples
- Protein Smoothies & Toast
Healthy Eating Plan: Lunches
Similar to breakfast, lunches are usually a variety of meals based on what’s in the fridge and pantry and come with a side of fresh fruit. My first suggestion for lunch is always leftovers (unless the leftovers are already slated for another meal), but here are a few additional lunch ideas that are simple and easy to prepare. As a bonus, all of them can be tailored according to what you currently have on hand, and packed either for school or a picnic lunch on the go.
- Healthy Homemade Lunchables
- Sweet & Savory Pasta Salad
- Homemade Hot Pockets
- Zucchini Fritters
- Tomato & Cucumber Sandwiches
Looking for more delicious and frugal inspiration? Get more real food meal plans here.